“This is for you, King George,” says Josh Abbott, introducing his band’s cover of George Strait’s 2006 hit single “Give It Away.” The song, written by Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson, gets a slinkier, sing-talk treatment from the Texas sextet than the King of Country’s cool croon, while still keeping the classic instrumentation intact. It was nearly 10 years ago that the track snagged a CMA Award for Song of the Year, and Abbott and company make it sound as fresh as ever. Watch the video above.
Josh Abbott Band recorded the track as a way to honor Strait and promote his new release Strait Out of the Box: Part 2, the second installment of Strait’s 1995 greatest hits collection. Fellow Texas-bred performers like Randy Rogers Band and Cody Johnson have also turned in Strait covers to raise awareness of the release. Available exclusively at Walmart, it will include 56 songs, two of which are new: “Kicked Outta Country” (written by Strait and Johnson) and “You Gotta Go Through Hell” (Strait/Bubba Strait/Dean Dillon).
While Strait will appear on tonight’s CMA Awards to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the broadcast, Josh Abbott Band continues on the road behind last year’s Front Row Seat. Strait Out of the Box: Part 2 will be available November 18th.